- Going splitboarding in the backcountry? Make sure you have all the right gear.
SmartWool Spring GlovesSmartWool's blended merino-wool and nylon Spring gloves ($70) are thick enough to keep your hands warm on the up and slim enough to fit easily beneath an outer mitt on the down.
Westcomb Apoc JacketBackcountry travel requires smart layering. Start with a durable, versatile shell like Westcomb's Apoc jacket ($480). Its Polartec NeoShell outer is water- and windproof for fending off blizzards but still breathable enough to let steam escape on the uptrack.
Arbor Abacus SplitboardThe mark of a truly great splitboard is that you can't tell that it comes apart when you're riding it. Easy-to-flip latches pull Arbor's Abacus ($700) tightly together, and a progressive sidecut creates additional contact points for a toothy grip. Arbor set back the rocker to maximize skin contact with the snow when climbing. Plus, the wood topsheet is gorgeous.
Black Diamond Expedition Ski PolesOver an entire winter of testing, the three flip-lock latches along the length of Black Diamond's aluminum Expedition ski poles ($100) never failed. They're collapsible down to two feet for easy packing and expandable to four and a half.
Spark R&D Magneto BindingsMost of us don't ride our splits in-bounds. Nor should we be riding in-bounds bindings in the backcountry. Spark R&D's Magneto bindings ($385) weigh significantly less than most lift-service models and come with highbacks that adjust from touring to riding mode with the flip of a latch.
Arc'teryx Theta SV BibsWith full leg-length laminated zippers, Gore-Tex breathability, and a reinforced seat and lower legs, Arc'teryx's Theta SV bibs ($475) are bombproof; they were also the most comfortable bibs we tested. Bonus points for the slim athletic fit.
G3 Alpinist SkinsG3's high-traction Alpinist skins ($170) held tight to the steepest, slickest skin tracks. And they're the only split-specific skins that come with tail straps out of the box.
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